Paint deemed unnecessary for new bridge

PADUCAH — A new western Kentucky bridge that spans the Tennessee River is already looking a bit aged, but state officials say it's intentional.

The US 62/641 bridge below Kentucky Dam has developed a coat of rust.

The Paducah Sun reported the $100 million span was designed as a "weathering" steel bridge that will oxidize and never need painting. Oxidizing is the technical term for rust.

Department of Highways spokesman Keith Todd says the design will save the state millions of dollars because it won't have to be painted every 15 to 20 years.

Trigg County resident John Dunning says he had been wondering when the new bridge would be painted. He says he couldn't figure out why officials would open it without first painting the structure.